In today’s world where communication has made us the proud members of a global village, women also play a vital role in comparison to their male counterparts. It is the responsibility of each one of us to respect each other’s role equally. But it is very much evident that the present day situation is not so. Cases of sexual harassment being reported are growing as fast as our fingernails. The situation is worsening at an alarming rate and needs to be addressed as soon as possible. It has become the need of the hour to start respecting women for who they are.
It feels shameful to announce that sexual harassment at workplaces, educational institutions, means of commuting have now become very common in our patriarchal society. A very few victims have enough courage to report such cases and fight for justice. In most of the cases of its not the fault of the victim but the society we live in always points out the mistake of victim rather than the accuser. For instance, the most pointed out fact is the dressing of the girl. But it is high time that we accept that it is not true.
Although I haven’t faced any such situation nor did I hear anything as such from my near and dear ones, I would like to share a story that I came across.
Three years after the victim commenced work in a semi skilled job in the hospitality sector. The accuser was her supervisor. She alleged that she was subjected to offensive and degrading comments about her private life.
She gathered courage and reported about the inappropriate behavior to the manager but she was told that she could not be transferred due to unavailability of posts.
Due to persisting behavior she again complained to another manager and this time within an hour she was moved to another department. However, after two weeks she was again moved to get previous post stating that the situation was fixed.
This time again the man seemed unchanged. The victim now approached the harassment officer at the workplace and yet again she was transferred.
Four months passed without any incident being reported and thus she was told to report back to her original position. This made her lodge an official complain and the matter was investigated formally. The management declared that an administrative warning was more appropriate that any disciplinary action.
Finding the outcome unsatisfactory, she lodged a police complaint and the matter was settled with a certain penalty amount.
As we have seen in this case, even after continuous complains her case was not given enough attention. This is the case with many other working women hence they are even afraid to complain. Or rather, they have no faith in justice being provided.
I personally believe in implementing more strict laws against the offender so that women feel more protected and faith in justice can be restored.